Every year, thousands of applicants for permanent residence in Canada have their applications refused for a multitude of reasons, many of which are entirely avoidable. These unfortunate situations typically result in much disappointment and distress for applicants and their families. Canada provides numerous immigration options for foreign nationals, but navigating the processes in place can sometimes be challenging. Here is a list of seven common reasons why people get refused for permanent residence in Canada, which should help anybody thinking of, or in the process of, immigrating to Canada.
Some cases of misrepresentation originate from the applicant either misreading a question on a form, omitting items of information from a form, or misunderstanding the instructions for completing a form. While the term ‘misrepresentation’ may seem to imply a deliberate attempt on the part of the applicant to conceal or distort certain information, this not always the case. Some instances of misrepresentation are accidental and preventable. The result of this transgression is not only that the application is refused, but also that the applicant may be banned from reapplying for two years (five years for Quebec applications).
All applicants for permanent residence in Canada and their dependents are required to take a medical examination with a doctor recognised by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). Certain health issues may result in refusal. Applicants for permanent residence who require medication for Diabetes or Hepatitis A, for example, could be deemed to be a potential burden on Canada’s universal healthcare system, and CIC reserves the right to refuse an otherwise eligible application for permanent residence on health grounds. There are, however, ways to overcome inadmissibility on health grounds. For example, a report from a specialist on the condition could help an applicant’s case and help to avoid further medical examinations, delays and/or refusal.
Criminal background checks from every country the applicant has resided in for six months or longer since he or she turned 18 years of age are mandatory. Canada understandably wants to ensure that immigrants to its communities do not have a criminal background that could potentially threaten the health and safety of other residents. If you don’t have any charges or convictions in your past, this stage is just about getting the paperwork done. If you do have a past criminal offence on your record, however, this could present issues during your application.
A foreign national may be criminally inadmissible to Canada on the grounds of serious criminality. For an applicant with a past conviction on his or her record, learning more about criminal inadmissibility, as well as the difference between deemed rehabilitation and individual rehabilitation, is key. Consulting an immigration lawyer with experience in issues pertaining to criminal inadmissibility is always a good idea for such applicants.
4. Missing a deadline
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) attempts to make the immigration process faster for applicants by imposing deadlines for the submission of certain forms and documents. Missing one of these deadlines, however, could result in an application being refused. Therefore, knowing how and when to obtain certain documents, and how and when to complete certain forms, is hugely important. Missing a deadline is usually avoidable, so being prepared and organised before and during the immigration process can make the difference between immigrating to Canada and having an application refused. While CIC will occasionally grant extensions, it is important to properly explain the grounds for extension and give reasons and/or supporting documents.
5. Reconsiderations — CIC makes mistakes
In most cases, CIC follows its own procedures and rules in a straightforward and consistent manner. Visa offices, however, are capable of errors and/or inconsistencies in their work. It is possible that they can misinterpret the law and refuse an application on unjustified grounds. Hiring the services of an immigration attorney can mitigate these factors. The attorney may be able to build a case based on established precedents similar or identical to the situation faced by an applicant who has had his or her application refused, and then represent the applicant in a case for reconsideration or appeals to the appropriate court.
6. Failure to attach documents
CIC provides a thorough but clear list of documents required of the applicant, as well as a tracking number, in order to bring an application to completion. It is up to the applicant to locate these documents and submit them to the correct CIC office with the tracking number. Failure to do so could result in the application being refused.
7. Applying without knowing eligibility requirements
Canada offers more than 60 immigration programs, each of which is unique. Depending on a number of factors, such as a person’s age, education, net worth, occupation and work experience, he or she may be eligible for one, more than one, or none of these programs. A superficial glance at the criteria for a given program might lead to an applicant believing that he or she is eligible, but it may be the case that he or she is not, in fact, eligible for that program. A detailed review of the application criteria against the applicant’s credentials is needed to assess eligibility for an immigration program.
Some applicants see their applications refused because they are not eligible for the program for which they have applied, even though they may have been eligible for another Canadian immigration program. This situation is preventable if the applicant correctly determines his or her eligibility for Canadian immigration before making an application in the first place. Failure to do so is often a waste of time, energy and money for the applicant.
To find out if you are eligible for any of over 60 Canadian immigration programs, please fill out a free online assessment today.
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